Niki D'Andrea, Author at PHOENIX magazine

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Since Governor Doug Ducey ordered all gyms to close (again) through the end of July, home workouts are back in the quarantine circuit. Here are half a dozen regimens from local fitness gurus that can help make you stronger, faster and maybe even saner. BODI Nike Master Trainer Nikki Metzger was named Women’s Health magazine’s “Next Fitness Star” in 2015. After running a successful group fitness gym in Chicago, she followed her exercise entrepreneur dream...

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The coronavirus crisis kept a lot of people indoors for a long time, but it still couldn’t kill rock ’n’ roll. When live music returns to local stages, these three Valley-based artists are among the first we want to see. Carvin Jones As far as blues-guitarist bona fides go, Phoenix’s own “King of Strings” has some high praise. Years ago, Eric Clapton called Jones “the next up-and-coming blues player,” and, more recently, he was named...

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Here is a trio of regular virtual happy hours that offer camaraderie, entertainment and an alcoholic education by some of the best bartenders in town – and you don’t even have to get up. Marshall Shore’s History Happy Hours “Arizona’s Hip Historian,” Marshall Shore, hosts this weekly happy hour filled with fun Arizona history trivia, tidbits from the state’s past, a view from the “Hist-O-Cam,” lively conversations with guests such as Valley drag performance legend...

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So, all your favorite summer music festivals got canceled and artists scrapped their tours. You still can’t stand shoulder-to-shoulder in a crowded club while bobbing your head along to live music in unison with tons of other people. That doesn’t mean this has to be the Summer of No Fun. Here’s a trio of live and local concerts you can stream into the comfort of your own living room or bedroom, plus one on-site, drive-in...

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Distance learning has now also become social distancing learning, as many of us who used to frequently enjoy attending university classes in auditoriums, mixology demos in packed bars and cozy educational salons in people’s homes are now attending mostly to the internet. Thankfully, cyberspace holds more knowledge for us, in the form of virtual classes. Arizona Humane Society Virtual Classes and Kits All in-person dog training classes at the Arizona Humane Society (AHS) have been...

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While it might not seem like there’s a whole lot to laugh about right now, a little bit of comic relief can’t hurt. If you’re seeking a short reprieve from disease and despair, here are four virtual comedy events to consider. Camera Tricks by Ben Seidman Can you recognize a magic feat done through trick photography? Test your B.S.-detector skills in an interactive virtual magic experience with magician and comedian Ben Seidman, who consulted on...

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If you’re looking to stay informed about Black Lives Matter and affiliated groups, here are seven Valley-based organizations that are playing a prominent role in the racial equality movement, and in local protests following the death of George Floyd. Black Lives Matter Phoenix Metro Since its inception in 2017, Black Lives Matter Phoenix Metro has participated in campaigns against police violence, including regular “Civilian Oversight for PHX!” discussions at Phoenix City Council chambers, and vigils...

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Whether you’re an adult or a kid, being stuck at home when the weather’s nice, work is done and school’s out can be kind of a bummer. One can only binge so many Netflix shows or play so much Minecraft before starting to go a little stir-crazy. Thankfully, there are a handful of downloadable coloring books and activities from local organizations that can help keep kids of all ages occupied and satisfied. Taliesin West Floor...

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Depending on your sensitivity, it can burn like downing a shot of hot lava and you might feel it tingling in your esophagus for several minutes. But the bright orange Dragon Detox shot at Giving Tree Café ultimately brings more gain than pain, according to owner David Warr. The potent spicy herbal elixir was concocted to provide a quick kick in the proverbial pants for the human immune system – especially important during a pandemic. Warr’s...

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Radio Free Europa challenges the adage “Truth is stranger than fiction.” The online play, penned by local playwright Ashley Naftule, is loosely based on a late-night call-in radio show called Coast to Coast AM that was hosted by a guy named Art Bell out of his living room in Nevada starting in the 1970s. Bell didn’t screen his callers or try to poke holes in their bizarre stories or theories. Originally slated for the stage...

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In the 1920s, “break a leg” was a way to wish theater people good luck in auditions and performances. But in the 2020s, it might as well be “break the internet,” especially since companies have had to cancel or postpone productions or move their performances to live streams in the wake of the coronavirus crisis. Thankfully for thirsty theatergoers, there are a handful of local groups providing performing arts content they can enjoy from the...

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Every Tuesday and Wednesday after 3 p.m., Whyld Ass Grill owner Keith Wyatt sets several quarts of soup outside the door of his vegan restaurant in Phoenix for anyone to take. It’s a gesture of gastronomic goodwill from someone who knows what it’s like to struggle. Wyatt had barely reopened after recovering from flooding when he shuttered amid coronavirus concerns. Since the pandemic, he’s had to lay off 85 percent of the staff at his...

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Do you know your Corey Haim films from your Corey Feldman flicks? Are you hip to the fact that the Seattle Mariners are the only MLB team to never play in a World Series? Maybe you’re the person friends call to settle arguments about whether or not the guitar solo in “Freebird” is longer than the guitar solo in “Stairway to Heaven” (it is)? Even if you don’t know anything other than you’re bored and...

For more than 50 years, PHOENIX magazine's experienced writers, editors, and designers have captured all sides of the Valley with award-winning and insightful writing, and groundbreaking report and design. Our expository features, narratives, profiles, and investigative features keep our 385,000 readers in touch with the Valley's latest trends, events, personalities and places.